The New Year Brings Hope
It has been a whirlwind first three months in my role as National President. Busy and very rewarding!
Reaching out to Chapters and Community Leaders to introduce myself personally, talk about our policy priorities and learn about your local activities was a great way to ‘meet’ many of you. It is so inspiring to find out more about the dedication of MADD Canada’s volunteers and the marvelous ideas that Chapters and Community Leaders have for Campaigns, Awareness and fundraising in their communities. I admire each and every one of you.
I have been honoured to participate in a number of regional and national events, including the launch of Project Red Ribbon and Transport Canada’s National Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims. I have met with a number of policy makers and elected officials to talk about MADD Canada and the work we do. Most recently, I met with several Members of the Legislative Assembly in my home province of Alberta to introduce them to MADD Canada and what we do and to discuss strengthening impaired driving legislation in this province.
Now that we have had a ‘breather’ from the holiday season, the coming months promise to be equally active. The spring will see the national launch of our annual Campaign 911 program and our Victims’ Weekend and Candlelight Vigil of Hope and Remembrance.
We are also anxiously awaiting the federal government’s plans for random breath testing. The measure was recommended by the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights in 2009,has been researched and discussed throughout 2010 and has been reviewed by provincial Ministers of Justice and Attorney Generals.
For our part, MADD Canada conducted a survey which found most Canadians would support random breath testing as a means to reduce impaired driving. We also consulted with Canada’s leading constitutional law expert, Peter Hogg, who provided his opinion that random breath testing would stand up to challenge under the Charter or Rights and Freedoms.
I’ve spent a fair bit of time talking to people about this anti-impaired driving measure and the major difference it could make in Canada. Most people see the value in this measure and would willingly sacrifice a few minutes of their time if it means we can reduce impaired driving. Now we need to see what the government plans to do.
We are hopeful the federal government will follow the Committee’s recommendation and implement random breath testing in Canada. It isn’t too late to voice your support for this important measure. Visit MADD Canada’s web site to find out how and to learn more about random breath testing. We need this important tool in Canada now.
Thank you friends – Take care.
Help stop impaired driving. If you see a driver you suspect is impaired, call 911.